Letters Into the therapeutics void

A lecturer from BSMS explains

BMJ 2009; 338 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.b398 (Published 02 February 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;338:b398
  1. Martin Llewelyn, senior lecturer, infectious diseases and therapeutics1
  1. 1Brighton and Sussex Medical School (BSMS), University of Sussex, Brighton, East Sussex BN1 9PX
  1. m.j.llewelyn{at}bsms.ac.uk

    I thought that it might be helpful to set the record straight on the undergraduate curriculum at Brighton and Sussex Medical School (BSMS).1

    The student selected project on drug development is precisely that: student selected. It is not core material, and in fact comparatively few students have chosen to take it. It is not concerned with the teaching of clinical pharmacology or therapeutics but with understanding the complexities of pharmaceutical research and development.

    Core teaching of clinical pharmacology and therapeutics is undertaken throughout the BSMS undergraduate programme, and rapid responders to the news story who believe that this student selected component contributes to this have misunderstood.2 The BSMS course has very recently been assessed and approved by the General Medical Council, and indeed as part of the recent quality assurance process an external examiner (a clinical pharmacologist) commented that he “was particularly pleased to see a distinct emphasis on therapeutics in one of the papers, and in the extent of topics covered in the OSCE [objective structured clinical examination].”

    Colleagues and students can rest assured that we at BSMS take the teaching of therapeutics extremely seriously and that the external quality assurance process has shown that the curriculum is delivered appropriately and to a high standard.


    Cite this as: BMJ 2009;338:b398


    • Competing interests: ML is senior lecturer in therapeutics at Brighton and Sussex Medical School.


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